Are Negative Emotions Important?

Have you ever felt a sudden surge of a very uncomfortable feeling like a dip in your belly when your friends ditched you to a party, when your relatives criticised you for the way you dressed or when you found out that your crush has a partner? All of us have felt it, and we’d be lying if we said we did not. Whenever you feel down or low, everybody around will tell you to feel positively and keep yourself from “negative emotions”. They will tell you to not let these “negative emotions” affect you and might even tell you to ignore them. You might even do the same to someone who’s feeling low. And this is right where we go wrong. We never realise that to a certain extent, negative emotions are actually very important for living a healthy lifestyle. Negative emotions are a sign that we need to introspect or take a moment to breathe and evaluate. For example, if you ever broke your arm and did not feel pain, how would you know that there was something wrong with it in the first place. A negative emotion is an indicator that something is wrong and needs to be checked and eventually fixed. To explain it in a sentence, negative emotions help you assess, recognize and rectify problematic thoughts, that is why it is so important to feel them.

But remember, negative emotions are helpful up to a certain amount. When these emotions start ‘breaking in’ your life every day is when it becomes a problem. These emotions are just like salt- A proper amount is necessary to make food taste delicious but too much of it just spoils the whole dish. Similarly, an adequate amount of negative emotions helps you assess your situation rationally, but too much of it would make your life miserable. So it’s important that you learn to differentiate between helpful and unhelpful negative emotions (like sadness is helpful, but depression is unhelpful). It’s really essential that you learn to use these emotions to your advantage to develop yourself as a person in order to have a better personal and professional life.

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